DUE PROCESS WIN for Male. Federal Appeals Court Says Miami U TitleIX Hearing is Biased.
A federal appeals court has partially sided with a male student who alleged that Miami University in Ohio was discriminatory when he was investigated for sexual assault and subsequently suspended. The appeals court found that Doe had sufficiently argued in his initial lawsuit that the university could be biased against male students accused of sexual assault, and that one administrator in particular, Susan Vaughn -Miami’s director of ethics and student conflict resolution- had possibly been prejudiced when she was investigating Doe and later judging him on a university panel. The appeals court found the following: (1) That Miami could have violated Title IX because the outcome of his hearing may have been incorrect. (2) The university could have been making decisions with an antimale bias. (3) Ms. Vaughn was allegedly the employee responsible for deciding whether or not to pursue charges for a sexual misconduct violation and was perhaps not evenhanded when she decided to investigate John Doe but not Jane Doe. (4) Ms. Vaughn’s behavior during the hearing was concerning and “dominated” the Title IX proceedings. (5) Because due process is a constitutional matter, “qualified immunity” may not apply to Ms.Vaughn…”The Sixth Circuit decision is important,” said Mr. Pavela, a higher education law expert.
insidehighered.com By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf